Methods Used in Water Leak Detection

There is an enormous amount of water being transported through water pipes on a daily basis. This number increases for each additional person residing inside the home or building. Even a crack as small as 2mm can lead to water loss of up to 800 litres a day. This not only increases the water bill but can also cause significant property damage. Plumbers specialising in water leak detection use a range of professional equipment and techniques to accurately identify the location of any leaks and have them fixed in no time.

Advances in technology mean that plumbers no longer dig to find the damaged pipe. Here are the main methods used to detect water leaks:

  • Acoustic test — Water leakage from a damaged pipe makes some specific sounds such as a whooshing or hissing sound. Using an acoustic microphone (in-ground) and a headset with a special meter, the sound can be clearly interpreted. This sound helps the plumber to not only diagnose water leaks but also to locate the exact location of the leak.
  • Tracer gas detection — Some water leaks do not produce any sounds, these may be located using tracer gas. In this test, water is emptied from the pipe and the pipe is filled with an inert gas. The pressure from the gas reaches the area of the leakage in the pipe. This is detected using a gas detector and the location of the leakage is pinpointed.
  • Thermal imaging  — Infrared cameras are also used to detect leaks. These detect the release of heat energy and convert it into a thermal image. The image clearly shows the area of the water leakage in the pipe. This is the most effective method for detecting leaks and as it is highly accurate in identifying leaks.

Leaks can occur in any property, particularly in older properties where the pipes may be worn out. Not all water leaks are the same, some are easy to locate and fix. However many water leaks are located deep in the ground beneath concrete slabs, brick walls, roads and flooring. This makes these leaks harder to locate and repair as some digging may be required. This is why one should always call an experienced plumber who specialises in water leak detection to ensure that the issue is fixed as soon as possible. Before hiring a professional one should make sure that they carry out careful research into all the businesses offering leak detection services.

For more information about water leak detection, contact a plumber.